It has been another very busy and sunny weekend at No.27, the weeds are growing as quick as the plants, if not quicker, popping up everywhere.
I can really feel the pace of the allotment and the number of jobs to do picking up now. Weeding, sowing and planting out galore at the moment, certainly is a Manic May.
Saturday, I decided to walk instead of drive to the allotment via the Wallingford and Allotment Garden Society (WAGS) plant sale, which took about 25 minutes. I avoided purchasing anything as I’m trying to grow everything from seed if I can but was good to show my face, see what was for sale and how my first time seedlings compared. I will only cheat if anything goes completely wrong.
Once at the allotment, I started by weeding and raking over rows so that they were ready for planting out.
First in was the ‘Old Bedfordshire Champion’ onions, classed as an old favourite and reliable cropper which I sowed on the 5th March indoors on a window sill. You can read more about these in my past post – “Less waffling and more digging”.
I just did the one row next to my carrots at 3m long and spaced the onions at approximately 10cms apart. I already have more onions in containers at home which I planted last year and have overwintered, so will see how they compare.
Second plants to go in were a 2.4m row of Celeriac, spacing each plant 30cms apart. I have never eaten or grown celeriac, but my plot neighbour very kindly offered me the plants so I couldn’t resist squeezing them in to my plans and giving them a go. According to one of my many books, celeriac has enjoyed a renaissance in recent years and has now graduated to almost gourmet status, with it’s nutty, celery-like taste. Has anyone else tried this winter staple?
Back home and now for some serious sowing as the sweet peas and onions have gone out, and I some have window sill space back.
Into the heated propagator went 3 each of Pumpkin “Rouge Vif d’Etampes” and Squash “Crown Prince” from Premier Seeds Direct. Placing the seeds sideways at a depth of roughly 3cms in seed compost to avoid any rotting due to their large size.
Followed by 4 Squash “Sweet Dumpling” seeds sown exactly the same way but putting the pots straight on to a window sill without additional heat or protection.
On to Sunday and the sun was shining brighter, making me want to go for walk and a picnic by the Thames. Before relaxing, I walked to the garden centre with a very large detour along the river to buy some root trainers and sweet corn seeds.
Last night I suddenly decided to swap out my Kale plans for Sweet Corn, in particular the “F1 Swift” variety, highly recommended the by The Allotment Shed Show Facebook members and classed as early, reliable cropper.
I have never grown either but decided I will probably eat more Sweet Corn than I do Kale, so makes sense. I might try squeeze in some Kale seedlings when the corn comes out September time.
On the way back from the garden centre was another detour to the allotment before heading to the river. I direct sowed another row of “Boltardy” beetroot and mixed lettuce, followed by checking the earlier sown lettuce seedlings, tying the sweet peas in and plenty of watering by my man, the newly recruited and trained “Water boy” as he is now known. It is one of few jobs I now let him loose to do, with strict instructions not to touch any of my babies 🙂
I have probably missed quite a few jobs but that’s enough for you to digest, so I will leave you there with a photo of when I finally made it to the river and thoroughly enjoyed the view with a picnic.